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Hi.

I’m Ursula, a conscious YouTuber/ blogger/ actress & academic. I create content online and on the stage. I love uplifting others and spreading good vibes.

If you's like to connect or collaborate send me an email: urs.botha@gmail.com

 

 

What did NAF 2019 teach me about courage?

What did NAF 2019 teach me about courage?

Recently I went to the National Arts Festival in Makhanda (Grahamstown) to debut my one-woman show, #selflove at the fringe. At the start of the week, my friends would say things like: “Urs you’re being so courageous with your show”. I’m puzzled because this apparent ‘courage’ feels scary and terrifying. I was beyond stressed. After performing six shows, this ‘courage’ thing took some inner-work. Here’s what I found:

Brene Brown breaks down the Latin meaning for the word courage: “To speak one’s mind by telling all one’s heart.” This resonates with me A LOT more than what is usually defined as courage.

My show, #selflove, is about matters of the heart that come from the heart, so I guess it’s a yes- this show classifies as courage. It sounds so simple. Yet, it feels like so much more is at stake when you come from the heart. Speaking from the heart involves vulnerability. Meaning that when I stand on stage and speak from the heart (about matters of the heart) I feel exposed. In this exposure, I open myself up to all sorts of judgments/ opinions and comments from others.

After I did my first show (out of six) at the festival, I was overcome by shame and fear. I’d now stepped out in courage, I did the ‘courageous’ thing, but I felt shame. Shame because now that my work was out there in the world, I wasn’t sure if it was good enough. This lead me down a deep tunnel of soul searching and introspection.

My first challenge was to accept that my show was and is ENOUGH! Not only enough when I…

…win a prize,

…get a good review,

…get a full house standing ovation,

…make lots of money.

The approval mark of ‘enough’ had to come from me first. It’s the cliché but you can’t find approval from others. We all know this and if you didn’t- now you do. I tend to forget this at times (so this is actually a reminder for me). Ursula: you will never be able to people please everyone. NEVER! Of course, people will come to my show and love it! Yay! And I’m sure there are people who have comments, dislikes, judgments, etc. That’s normal because we are all human with different tastes and opinions. Imagine how dull life would be if we all liked everything to be the same?!

I soon realized that I couldn’t do heart work and seek approval simultaneously. Approval seeking and authenticity seeking are counter opposites. Thus I had to stay true to what I created and…wait for it….believe that what I’ve created is worthy in its own right.

When I let go of all the people pleasing and demands I had placed on my show in order to be worthy, I could finally enjoy the show and let it do its thing. This created space for less of ‘me’ and ‘my agenda’, instead creating room for God and a Holy agenda, which is way more powerful than any of my pursuits.

These beautiful ladies opened their hearts to me about what loving themselves mean and how its a process.

These beautiful ladies opened their hearts to me about what loving themselves mean and how its a process.

After my shows, women would come and tell me the impact the show had made on them. They would bravely and courageously share their heart stories with me. Young girls would tell me how it touched them. Not at all do I claim to have all the answers, instead, we could ponder the concepts and ask the questions together. Questions about being enough, being empowered, being wholehearted. This brought me full circle to the heart of why I wrote this play. I never wrote it for reviews, ovations or awards. I wrote it in order to create meaning and to move into a space of wholeness for myself and others.

I have now experienced that courage can still feel terrifying. It can be uncomfortable and not always look pretty. Courage doesn’t have to be perfect because it’s a process. Also, courage has more to do with God’s (Universe/ Creator’s) will than our own agendas. Courage doesn’t promise an A+ outcome according to your standards. Instead, courage requires us to let go of our plans and surrender to a divine plan that is much greater than ours. Just like any relationship, courage takes time to get familiar with. Even though it's terrifying, I greet you courage- let’s get to know one another.

#selflove will be touring Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria, Hermanus etc etc. Follow my  instagram  and  facebook  for updates

#selflove will be touring Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria, Hermanus etc etc. Follow my instagram and facebook for updates

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